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New Delhi: Apr 13, 2014
The Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) is expecting to play at least six home and away Test series against India in the next eight-year FTP cycle between 2015 and 2023 which will also include an “off-shore” home series in the United Arab Emirates.
According to an ESPN Cricinfo report, “The PCB is now waiting for a final confirmation from the BCCI following its Working Committee meeting, which the PCB have been informed, is expected to take place in the next 15 days. It will then enable the PCB to work out a long-term broadcasting deal with regular India series at its centre.”
Earlier PCB chairman Najam Sethi had made it clear that Pakistan’s conditional support for the ICC revamp depends on the promise of said number of series against India. The change in the PCB’s stance has taken place on the condition that Pakistan would be involved in bilateral series against all Full Members, including India.
According to the report,”If Indo-Pak series are officially slotted into the eight-year FTP, it could also involve a ‘home’ series for Pakistan against India in the United Arab Emirates.” It is learnt that all the nine member boards have confirmed their earlier commitments with PCB until 2020 and are chalking out a fresh plan for the period from 2020 to 2023.
The BCCI could look to slot in as many as six series against Pakistan, due to the gaps that are available in the existing FTP calendar. The first of these bilateral series could take place in the UAE in the winter of 2015. “Cricket between both countries is beneficial as the Pakistan government is also keen to revive ties with India on a high note,” PCB chairman Najam Sethi said on Friday following the two-day ICC board meeting in Dubai.
India and Pakistan have not played a full series since the ghastly 26/11 terror attack in Mumbai. Pakistan visited India for a short limited-over series in December 2012 which included three ODIs and two T20 Internationals. The PCB estimates that after committing to the ICC revamp, the financial benefits could reach PKR 30 billion from the bilateral ties, the major chunk of which will be earned from hosting India.
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